What Is Opensea and How Does It Work?

Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) marketplaces are springing up all over the place. If you’re interested in NFTs, there are several NFT marketplaces that you can use to buy, sell or even mint NFTs.

However, you need to know how NFT marketplaces work to use them effectively. With that in mind, let’s look at OpenSea, one of the leading NFT marketplaces.

What Is Opensea?

Opensea is the first ever decentralized NFT marketplace built on the Ethereum blockchain and is currently the largest. You can use it to buy or sell NFTs and create your own NFT collections. As complicated as it sounds, OpenSea is actually a simple platform to navigate, and anyone can use it.

The marketplace was initially used as a market for CryptoKitties, which were among the first decentralized applications (DApps) on the Ethereum blockchain. It has now graduated into a marketplace for NFTs, including art, domain names, game items, and music.

The platform has been hacked several times, during which NFTs worth thousands of dollars were stolen. Nevertheless, it remains the most trusted platform for NFT minting and trading.

Since it is based on the Ethereum blockchain, you’ll need an Ethereum wallet to be able to interact with and use OpenSea. Supported wallets include MetaMask, Coinbase, Trust Wallet, MyEtherWallet, and many others.

It also supports multiple blockchains such as Polygon (MATIC) and Klaytn (KLAY) so that you have a number of options to use apart from Ethereum, which is the main blockchain. In addition, there are over 200 payment options, including stablecoins. All payment methods are crypto-related.

If you don’t know what NFTs are, it is advisable to learn a little about NFTs before going into OpenSea in full so that you can follow along.

How Does Opensea Work?

OpenSea is used for buying, selling, and NFTs, using smart contracts since it is a decentralized, blockchain-based platform.

Smart contracts are programmed to ensure that there is no cheating on the platform, and creators can sell their tokens at whatever price they deem fit.

OpenSea uses the ERC-721 and ERC-1155 Ethereum standards for NFTs to confirm ownership of digital collectibles so that users don’t claim ownership of what does not belong to them.

While the marketplace facilitates the transfer of NFTs, the transactions are done directly on the Ethereum network between a seller and a buyer.

Because the transaction fees on Ethereum can be outrageous, OpenSea has recently introduced the Polygon blockchain to facilitate faster and cheaper transactions. You can learn more about Ethereum gas fees and why they are so high.

What Is OpenSea Used For?

As the transition from a physical to a digital era continues to garner momentum, platforms like OpenSea will be heavily relied upon to create and transfer digital collectibles ownership.

In anticipation of this, the marketplace has a number of features that cater to the needs of its users. The following are some major uses of OpenSea.

NFT Minting

The key use of OpenSea. You can easily mint an NFT and set up an NFT collection. You don’t need any experience to do this, and it takes only a few simple steps.

Perhaps the best part is that NFT minting on OpenSea does not cost anything, and you can mint as many as you wish in your collection. If you’re an iPhone user, here are the best ways to mint NFTs.

The NFTs you create can be anything from art, music, domain names, virtual worlds, trading cards, collectibles, and sports assets. You can even mint NFTs that give you bragging rights, such as proof of attendance NFTs like the one in the picture below, given out to attendees at a Web3 conference.

Marketplace for Buying and Selling NFTs

OpenSea is known primarily as a platform for buying and selling NFTs. This is where creators sell their digital pieces, and buyers can buy directly from them in peer-to-peer trades.

OpenSea accounts for the highest NFT sales, and creators can easily create their marketplaces and start selling NFTs, raise funds and conduct NFT drops for their followers. In addition to trading NFTs on OpenSea, the platform has a feature that lets you gift NFTs to other OpenSea users.

Source of NFT Stats

The OpenSea platform is also a major source of information on NFTs. If you’re looking for statistics on NFTs, the OpenSea NFT Stats is where you can view compiled data about NFTs ranked according to sales volume or activity and much more.

What Are OpenSea’s Fees?

Anyone can use OpenSea to create their own marketplace and mint NFTs and share them for free or sell them. The platform only charges a 2.5% fee for each successful sale to help run the marketplace. This low fee is one feature that distinguishes OpenSea from other NFT marketplaces.

Other than this, you only have to pay network fees for transactions. Again, this should only be a concern if you use the Ethereum network, as fees on Polygon and other blockchains are not nearly as high as that of Ethereum.

Is OpenSea Safe?

As mentioned earlier, OpenSea has been hacked a few times. However, it remains the most reliable NFT marketplace in the space. Using smart contracts to run it makes it safe from most human manipulation, but you also have to ensure your account is secure.

It is advisable to use two-factor authentication and other security measures for your account to prevent it from getting compromised. However, for decentralized platforms, the responsibility of security usually falls on the user, so make sure you don’t take this lightly.

8 Pros and Cons of OpenSea

Pros of OpenSea

  • Simple and easy to use
  • Free to use for all
  • Charges low fees on NFT sales
  • Multiple blockchains give options to escape Ethereum’s high fees

Cons of OpenSea

  • All payments are made in crypto only
  • You don’t know minting fees until the sale completes
  • Doesn’t have truly decentralized governance

Should You Use Opensea?

If you have anything to do with NFTs, you should use OpenSea. It is currently the most trusted platform for this purpose and also the cheapest to use.

It doesn’t matter if you have any experience with NFTs or not, as Opensea is a platform you can easily use even as an absolute beginner, so there is really no reason not to use it.

Author: Traciwininger

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